five ways to participate in national novel writing month around salem ma 2023

Happy Monday everyone and welcome back to the blog! Are you participating in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) this year? Well, it begins in two days and today’s blog post contains a few tips and tricks to help get those creative juices flowing.

First off, what is NaNoWriMo? “National Novel Writing Month began in 1999 as a daunting but straightforward challenge: to write 50,000 words of a novel in thirty days. Now, each year on November 1, hundreds of thousands of people around the world begin to write, determined to end the month with a first draft. They enter the month as elementary school teachers, mechanics, or stay-at-home parents. They leave novelists.” [Source:]

So how can you use Salem’s community and history to inspire you?

Five ways to participate in National Novel Writing Month around Salem, MA

Become inspired by Salem’s history

Salem has such a rich history that extends far beyond the Salem Witch Trials. If you need a starting place, I have assembled a recommended reading book list on Amazon right here. I worked with local historian Jen Ratliff to create this list so I know it’s all good stuff.

See Salem’s history first hand

Now that you have browsed some books going over Salem’s stories, see those stories first hand at the Peabody Essex Museum! The PEM is truly a gem here in Salem and I can’t recommend it enough. Stop in on a rainy day and take your time going through all of the artifacts, artwork, exhibits and more to take it all in and make it feel real. You never know, maybe part of the PEM’s vast collections will inspire a part of your novel.

Become inspired by Salem’s literary history 

Did you know there are several locations in Salem where you can visit Salem’s literary past first hand? I’d suggest stopping into both The House of the Seven Gables as well as the Custom House. They both have ties to Nathaniel Hawthorne himself.

Change up your scenery

Sometimes a change of scenery is all it takes to shake up a writer’s block if you’re having one. I’d suggest booking a staycation at one of Salem’s lovely hotels. The rates will be back to a reasonable range post-October and it might be just what you need to focus your energy and power through those mental blocks. Need some help finding a hotel? Click right here for an entire list.

Get together with other readers and writers

I love all of the local book clubs I have been seeing pop up. I’d strongly suggest both Nocturne’s book club (which focuses on spooky/dark/macabre books) or the variety of options available to you at the Salem Athenaeum. The Athenaeum offers writers groups, book clubs and other programming to fit a wide range of tastes and needs. You could also work to organize a NaNoWriMo write-in for your area! Head to to sort out those logistics.

I hope this helps. Good luck with your novel and enjoy!! <3

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